Tuesday, October 22, 2013
This week has been pretty up and down. The highlight was definitely our zone conference on Friday. The meeting itself was great. We learned a ton from Presidente Brough and left incredibly inspired to improve. We also got fed a nice, "almost like in the US" lunch and then were given all the letters that had arrived for us over the past 6 or so weeks. I was very pleased to see that I got a nice stack, but more on that later.
As they were distributing the letters, it began to rain, at first just like normal Guatemalan rain, but then it began to rain like I've never seen before. In a matter of minutes the parking lot was beginning to fill with water. We left pretty quickly and, after wading through a small river, we able to catch a bus going back to Villa Canales. As we were driving, we noticed that the streets were filling up with water. Before too long, there was a foot and a half of water flowing through the street; however, at that point the river that flows next to the street had filled to the point that it burst its banks and completely flooded the street. It was pretty intense. It looked exactly like what I had seen on TV so many times but never thought I'd see in real life. Our bus was safe, but the car ahead of us began to be carried away by the force of the water. The family couldn't open the doors, but luckily they were able to climb out their windows onto the roof of their car, where they waited for help. We eventually were able to make our way to higher ground as well, and from there take another bus to VC. I was dying that I didn't have my camera and wasn't able to take any pictures, but just Google "flood" and you'll have a pretty accurate picture. As interesting as the flood was though, I do feel really bad for all the people whose houses of car were damaged. Luckily, houses here are very flood and fire resistant.
Sunday was a hard day. We had very few investigators attending church. I was incredibly disappointed as all of our investigators who had been progressing didn't attend, and because of this we had at least two baptismal dates fall through. However, as discouraged as I was that morning, it made me think about how my Heavenly Father has felt the same way about me when I haven't done what He wants me too. As missionaries we can see how easily our investigators can improve their lives and receive a ton of blessings, just by doing these simple things. Likewise, I'm sure Heavenly Father can see the relative ease with which we could improve ourselves but often we fail to obtain those blessings. I'm sure if we could truly have an eternal perspective, things would be very different.
Ok, to close I'd like to send a couple of quick responses to some of the letters I received and so thoroughly enjoyed. I really do love hearing from all of you. It’s one of the highlights of every transfer. Anyway, first off, a special shout out to Brother Minor, who has been one of my most faithful letter writers and who's letters are so beautiful that I almost don't want to open them for fear of ruining them. Missy, if you liked the Odyssey you have to read the Iliad. It's one of my favorite books of all time but you don't read it in that class. Also, just wait until you read Hamlet. It’s incredible also. Grandma, thanks so much for your encouragement and support! You and Grandpa have been great examples of faithful service. Christine, ok, now that I know that your family has read my posts for Family Home Evening I feel super self-conscious. Yikes, these emails have a lot to live up to.
Dad, yes, I have heard that explanation that you only have 186,000 mi/sec to spend traveling spatially or through time. I once saw a graph where the X and Y axis are spatial directions and the Z axis is time. Where are right now is a point, and extending up in the Z direction is a cone. I forget how they explained the angle of the side of the cone, but it showed both the minimum time it would take information to reach you from a certain distance away and how, if you began to move through space, you would begin to slow down you're progress in the time direction. I'm realizing that I'm not explaining it very well, but if you come across it, tell me.
Aunt Nicole, I must say, I'm incredibly jealous that you got to go to that New York apple festival. There's not a lot of that going on down here in Guatemala. I'm sorry Ethan, but I can't look up "How General Authorities Eat Reese Peanut Butter Cups," as much as I'd like to, and Seth, I can't download the BYU sports app either. Also, way to go with learning Spanish. Pilas usted! Aunt Carolyn, I hope the move went well. Thanks for taking the time to write me. I love hearing how you all are doing! Mom, I'm glad to hear that you've all started to read Jesus the Christ; that is definitely an amazing book. Adam, I'm glad you loved HP and the Goblet of Fire. Have you started the others? And Carmen, you win the prize of being the only person who recognized that I definitely needed to hear about something as earth shakingly groundbreaking (wow, that's a weird phrase) as Texas Instruments updating their calculators with color graphics. I can't even imagine what that's like. Wi-Fi capabilities are up next. Also, from all the letters I received it seems like you guys are doing some great missionary work. Keep it up!